Salto the robotic seems to be like a Star Wars imperial walker in miniature. However, do not be fooled by its measurement — this little robotic has a mighty spring in its step. Salto can vault over thrice its peak in a single sure.

Researchers on the College of California, Berkeley, first unveiled Salto’s high-flying capabilities in 2016. Now, they’ve geared up the robotic with a slew of new expertise, giving it the flexibility to jump in a place like a pogo stick and leap via impediment programs like an agility canine. Salto may even take brief jaunts round campus, powered by a radio controller.

The researchers hope Salto will propel the event of small, agile robots that might leap by way of rubble to assist in search-and-rescue missions. They will describe the robotic’s new abilities right this moment (Tuesday, May 21) on the 2019 International Conference on Robotics and Automation, Montreal.

Fearing’s lab is understood for constructing insect-impressed robots that may safely crawl throughout flat surfaces, which can be too smooth or too severe for a wheeled robot to navigate.

Salto’s single, dominant leg is modeled after these of the galago, or Senegalese bush baby. The small, tree-dwelling primate’s muscle groups and tendons retailer vitality in a way that provides the spry creature the flexibility to string several jumps collectively in a matter of seconds. By linking a collection of quick jumps, Salto can also navigate steep terrain — like a pile of particles — that may be unattainable to cross without leaping or flying.